Ideas to Action:

Independent research for global prosperity

Views from the Center

CGD experts offer ideas and analysis to improve international development policy. Also check out our Global Health blog and US Development Policy blog.

 

Reducing Deforestation Is Key to Closing the Paris Gap

A new global climate agreement based on voluntary national pledges of domestic action is expected to be finalized in Paris in December. As of now, the 28 nations of the European Union and 9 other nations including the United States, Mexico, and Russia have submitted plans (called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions or INDCs).  

A Glimmer of Hope for a Carbon Tax in the US?

I’ve spent the last year at CGD working with a team of experts to figure out how to encourage more funders to pay tropical forest countries for results in reducing deforestation.  My CGD colleagues Jonah Busch and Frances Seymour have done extensive research that documents that forests are critical for development and to combat climate change. And paying forest countries for performance – actual results in reducing deforestation – can provide an essential incentive and can complement funding for inputs, as reflected in CGD’s Cash-on-Delivery aid research.  

Keystone Pipeline Shows Congress’s Climate Change Confusion

The Senate voted today (Thursday) to move ahead with legislation to build the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport millions of barrels of dirty tar sands oil from Canada to the US Gulf Coast, mostly to be refined and exported to other countries (legislation destined for the Presidential veto). Strange, then, that last week the Senate voted 98-1 to approve a resolution stating that “climate change is real and not a hoax.” 

Are the US and G-20 Finally Leading on Climate?

Update November 17: As expected, the United States and Japan announced their pledges of $3 billion and $1.5 billion, respectively, to the Green Climate Fund at the G-20 summit in Australia.  The United Kingdom is set to announce a £650 million ($1 billion pledge) in Berlin later this week and Canada said it will contribute, although it did not announce how much. Together with pledges from 11 other countries, total pledges amount to $7.5 billion, getting close to the $10 billion target for beginning operations of the Green Climate Fund. Pledges are also expected from Australia (despite the step-back from climate action by the new government), Italy, Norway, and Spain. The agreement reached by the Green Climate Fund board a few weeks ago, which approved a logical framework for REDD+, may spur Norway to pledge given it lays the groundwork for GCF support to forests.

 

Can California’s Carbon Polluters Save Brazil’s Rainforests?

On a recent trip to California I had the chance to meet with the experts in the state government who are managing the development of the world’s only carbon market program that will generate funding to reduce deforestation in tropical forest countries. Since deforestation is an important source of carbon emissions climate policy experts are watching to see how California’s program evolves.